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Victorian Women Writers and the ClassicsThe Feminine of Homer$
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Isobel Hurst

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780199283514

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199283514.001.0001

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(p.220) Conclusion
Victorian Women Writers and the Classics

Isobel Hurst (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Virginia Woolf's ironic attitude to the classics in On Not Knowing Greek is examined not as the bitterness of a woman who has been excluded from patriarchal culture, but as a fascinating and idiosyncratic response to Greek, which owes much to her female predecessors. Not knowing the Greeks is not seen as a gendered deprivation, but a limitation which can only be overcome by using the imagination: finding pleasure in the strangeness of a new language and creating contemporary forms of literature in response to ancient myth are crucial to the development of the woman writer.

Keywords:   Virginia Woolf, On Not Knowing Greek, imagination, language, myth, woman writer

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